Worldcoin Unveil Two Major Updates to Allow Users Unverify World ID

Worldcoin Eye-Scanning Banned in Portugal for 90 Days

In a recent report, the Portuguese regulators took decisive action to suspend Worldcoin’s operation temporarily. For the past few months, the OpenAI-led project Worldcoin has faced regulatory backlash due to privacy concerns over biometric data. The project kicked off last year and targeted collecting thousands of biometric data.

Portugal Order Worldcoin to Suspend Operation

The exercise involves scanning the eye iris and issuing a digital ID. Since the launch of the projects, hundreds have been lined up to sign up for the project and receive a token as a reward.

On Monday, March 25, the Portuguese regulator restricted the Worldcoin proof of personhood project. The Worldcoin project initially planned to issue a unique identification that differentiates humans from artificial intelligence bots.

A review of the Worldcoin Foundation demonstrated that over 4.5 million people from 120 countries have registered for the program.

In a statement from Portugal data regulators, the National Data Protection Commission (CNPD) ordered the Worldcoin team to suspend the collection of personal data in the region for three months.

Based on the data collected by the Worldcoin team, the CNPD argued that the ongoing eye iris scanning posed a threat to the citizens. The regulators claimed that Worldcoin operations exposed the Portugal residents to a high risk of misuse.

Global Regulators Oppose Worldcoin Activities

In the report, the CNPD urged the Portuguese authorities to take immediate action to prevent the citizens from being harmed. According to the regulators, around 300,000 individuals have signed up for the Worldcoin program.

The regulators regretted that the authority had received several cases of unauthorized data collection from minors over the past few months. The CNPD condemned the Worldcoin data collection approach, which failed to provide adequate information to the target group.

The regulators complained that in early March, the Worldcoin Foundation engaged in a data transition to Personal Custody, which allowed the users to gain access to their data and could lead to the deletion of information.

In March, the Worldcoin Foundation launched Personal Custody, which eliminated the encryption and storage option for individual biometric data. This development aimed to enable users to access personal information through their devices.

The launch of Personal Custody was aimed at building people’s trust. This development demonstrated that the Worldcoin Foundation maintained high protective measures for people’s biometric information.

Earlier this week, the Tools of Humanity executive Tiago Sada argued that the launch of Personal Custody aimed to give users complete control over their data. He believes that integrating Personal Custody grants the users peace of mind.

Worldcoin Takes Protective Measures to Safeguard User Biometric Data

Based on the data security threat posed by the Worldcoin project, the Portugal regulators instructed the foundation to suspend data collection in the region temporarily. In the meantime, the regulators plan to conduct due diligence checks and assess Worldcoin’s compliance with the existing regulations.

In retaliation to the new directives in Portugal, the data protection officer at Worldcoin Foundation, Jannick Preiwisch, confirmed that the company complies with the role and responsibilities of data protection authorities.

Commenting on the CNPD report, the official vehemently refuted that the Worldcoin Foundation did not collect personal data from under age. Preibisch added that the team behind collecting biometric data maintains high data protection standards.

Preiwisch’s remarks mirror a similar statement made by the chief executive of OpenAI, Sam Altman, who underlined the need to differentiate between humans and bots. Mr Altman argued that Worldcoin is critical in building a solid financial network and identity.

With the growing popularity of AI technology, Altman underscored the importance of individuals to prove they are human. Despite the remarkable efforts made by Altman-led project the global regulators have occasionally hindered the Worldcoin activities in  collecting the desired number of biometrics.

In an earlier interview, the UK-based privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch criticized the Worldcoin efforts. The organization claimed that the Worldcoin data collection exposed the users to the risk of hacking and exploitation.

The comments made by the Big Brother Watch echo a statement from the Spanish regulators who expressed concerns about Worldcoin activities. The data protection authority in Spain ordered Worldcoin to suspend operation in the region for 90 days.

Editorial credit: rafapress /

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